Colgate University is a nationally recognized liberal arts college located in central New York. Colgate has made a commitment to technology by weaving it into their overall philosophy. Leading technology is implemented and supported in order to assist students in meeting rigorous academic standards, as well as in facilitating the university’s business operations. High-speed wired and wireless networks feed all areas of the campus including over 700 Mac computers in a variety of environments (digital media labs, office labs, and individual end users).
One solution for many challenges
When Josh Snyder, a Technology Support Analyst at Colgate University, first began to investigate the Casper Suite, he was looking to deliver software remotely. He wanted to push software to end users from his desk or via Colgate’s helpline.
After downloading a demo from JAMF Software’s website, he found that the Casper Suite could quickly and easily handle this task and more. Josh and the IT staff are now looking to the Casper Suite to solve other problems like maintaining a timely and accurate inventory of all their machines, software, network devices, and installation documentation, as well as license tracking without having to do it by hand.
Meeting the challenges
Colgate is realizing numerous benefits. According to Josh, “To add a block of 300 machines would have taken our staff of five a total of 15 days to complete. Using the QuickAdd feature within the Casper Suite we were able to prepare that same number of machines in one day.”
The QuickAdd feature sends installable packages out to users that enables SSH. It creates a hidden account and adds the computers into the JSS. From that point on, machines are managed remotely.
Regarding software installs, Josh says, “Rather than having to schedule a visit to each individual machine, it’s now happening remotely with packages. It’s almost instantaneous or at the most taking 15 minutes.”
The world of troubleshooting is also less complicated now. Josh is taking advantage of Composer.
“Composer is described as a package creation utility, but we’re also using it to troubleshoot. We’re breaking down failing packages to find conflicts,” said Josh. “Composer’s ability to take snapshots helps us check on software updates and evaluate how they will impact software elsewhere on campus.”
Although Colgate’s IT staff is still very busy, Josh describes their lives as being “...much, much better. Using the Casper Suite has been spectacular.”Download PDF